Lorna and I wandered over the entire property today inspecting trees that we’ve planted. We were particularly interested in the oaks since they can be majestic trees that live for centuries. The Bur Oaks planted next to our family cemetery 30-years ago are now over 30-feet tall! The Bur Oaks and Swamp White Oaks planted along the edges of the prairie have had a more difficult time. Over half of those trees have died back to the ground and now have multiple stems.
Oaks are known for their resistance to fire so we planted them in areas where we know they would be burned. However it seems that the trees need to be old enough (20-30-years?) to have the thick bark to resist the intense heat of a prairie fire.
It was a perfect fall day to be out. While we were talking around I heard the calls of Bob White Quail and White-throated Sparrows. I startled a big fat groundhog relaxing in the sun near the barn.